Sensing the Troubles compiled a history of Northern Ireland’s Troubles using fragments of memories rooted in the senses. By paying attention to sight, sound, smell, taste and touch, we can move beyond well-known political narratives and remember stories of the everyday as well as the extraordinary.

I wanted to write a different history of the Troubles: one that reflected the experience of living within a conflict and that conveyed the everydayness of it. The focus is sensory history because it is through the senses that we meet with and make meaning of the world around us.

I received a Leverhulme Research Fellowship in 2021-2, and this allowed to to pursue this project.

Prof Roisín Higgins

I work at Maynooth University and my research is on historical memory and the afterlife of significant events.

I enjoy working with the public to expand our historical knowledge. I ran a Heritage Lottery public history project on letters from widows and mothers during the First World War, called Dear Mrs Pennyman. I was also a presenter on RTÉ’s National Treasures , a four-part series which told the history of Ireland using objects brought by members of the public to roadshows in Dublin, Cork, Galway and Belfast.

For more information you can read my staff page at Maynooth.